Each year, Hiram College welcomes its alumni back to campus to reconnect with classmates, reminisce on college years and make new memories. This year, Alumni Weekend 2023 was filled with activity, conversation, and laughter as alumni participated in classroom presentations, bonfires, food and beverage tastings, dancing, and much more.
Associate Director of Development and Alumni Relations, Carly Workman looks forward to hosting this event each year. “This year’s alumni weekend went phenomenally! I truly enjoy getting to know alumni on a personal level and forming a bond that never fades. They represent Hiram daily and I love hearing their Hiram stories and tales. I make sure they brag about themselves a little bit! They’re truly outstanding individuals.”
One event Hiram alumni and the Office of Development and Alumni Relations look forward to each year is the All Alumni Dinner and Awards Ceremony where the 2022-2023 award recipients are recognized. All recipients of the Alumni Awards are nominated by alumni, staff, faculty, and friends of Hiram College. “These awards are important because they show the outstanding work our alumni are doing, and they are able to be recognized in front of their peers. I believe our awards symbolize that their commitment and time spent at Hiram have helped them grow in their professional careers,” said Workman.
The following were recognized:
2023 Lifetime Achievement Award: William Heath ’64
This award is intended for those who have more than 15 years of career experience after leaving Hiram College. The award honors individuals who have accomplished greatly in their professional capacities and, in so doing, have brought honor and recognition to Hiram College.
William was nominated by fellow alumnus, Marshall Dun ’65 who writes, “Dr. Heath is an exceptional novelist, historian, poet, and professor who has distinguished himself throughout his long and illustrious career. I can’t imagine a much more deserving nominee for the Lifetime Achievement Award.”
William received his master’s and doctoral degrees in American studies from Case Western Reserve University. He taught American literature and creative writing at prestigious colleges and universities and was a Fulbright professor. Additionally, William has published three poetry books, The Walking Man, Steel Valley Elegy, and Going Places; a chapbook, Night Moves in Ohio; three novels, The Children Bob Moses Led (winner of the Hackney Award), Devil Dancer, and Blacksnake’s Path; a work of history, William Wells and the Struggle for the Old Northwest (winner of two Spur Awards and the Oliver Hazard Perry Award); and a collection of interviews, Conversations with Robert Stone. Over three hundred of his poems have appeared in literary magazines, reviews, and anthologies.
2023 Terrier Award: Tanya Allen ’78
This award is presented annually to one or more alumni or friend/supporter of the College and is intended for those who serve tenaciously in the institutional interest of Hiram College. The award proclaims participation in alumni or college affairs, faithful effort in maintaining class or alumni organizations, and efforts to expand the influence and prestige of Hiram College.
Tanya was nominated by AEB member, Patricia Darby Marbury ’77, who noted Tanya’s years of organizing social gatherings and outings for the alumni of the Alliance for Black Consciousness and the Black Student Union. Tanya has been instrumental in keeping her classmates together and she coordinates and provides informative forums such as Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Black History Month, Juneteenth, job and educational opportunities, as well as mental health and wellness awareness. Tanya is also a recipient of the Leadership & Excellence Award with the Reach Program, Excellence in School Writing Power of the Pen Award, and Outstanding Volunteerism with Shoes and Clothes for Kids.
2023 Service to Humanity Award: Denny Taylor ’73 and Lucy Chamberlain ’77
The Service to Humanity Award is presented annually to one or more alumni and is intended for those making outstanding contributions to the betterment of their communities and our world. These contributions can consist of volunteerism, philanthropy, community service, or the improvement of world knowledge and understanding. The award celebrates those who strive to make a difference for others and, in so doing, have brought honor and recognition to Hiram College.
Denny and Lucy have almost solely been responsible for designing and maintaining many gardens on campus, especially the Hurd Garden. They have involved students for summer employment and internships, community members, and faculty and staff.
Lucy has loved gardens her whole life, having been featured in a 1975 edition of the Cleveland Plain Dealer about “dorm gardens” at Hiram, hinting at her future career as a horticulturist and botanist. After graduating from Hiram, Lucy earned her master’s degree in landscape ecology, design, and maintenance from the University of London’s Wye College. Lucy has extensive field experience working with design professionals on landscape projects large and small in geographically diverse locations.
After graduating from Hiram College, Denny continued his education at Cornell University, where he earned a doctorate in ecology. He returned to the College in 1979 and taught biology for many years. Denny retired in 2021 and was the recipient of the JJ Turner Award in 2020. He has presented his research within the United States and internationally in Malaysia, India, and Pakistan. Denny also volunteers with the Hiram Public Gardens, serves as president of the Hiram Historical Society, and was inducted into the Garfield Society of Hiram College in 1997.
Connect with us! Be sure to check out your alumni perks. If you know of a Hiram alum you would like to nominate for the 2023-2024 Alumni Awards, please email AlumniRel@hiram.edu
By Elyse Pitkin